Pools: Friday, 2pm - 10pm ET (11am - 7pm PT) & Saturday, 11am - 5pm ET (8am - 2pm PT)
Quarterfinals (Top 96): Saturday, 5pm - 9pm ET (2pm - 6pm PT)
Semifinals (Top 24): Sunday, 11:30am - 3pm ET (8:30am - 12pm PT)
Top 8: Sunday, 3pm ET (12pm PT)
Side event - character auction tournament: Friday, 10pm ET (7pm PT)
All action streamed on twitch.tv/TEKKEN
Brackets can be found here.
The TEKKEN World Tour makes a trip to the Chicagoland area this weekend for COMBO BREAKER in St. Charles, IL. COMBO BREAKER is the second of three consecutive Master events on the Tour following last weekend’s Battle Arena Melbourne and next month’s Fighting Games Challenge.
This weekend’s event is a big tournament in terms of both its importance and the size of its field. More than 470 players are scheduled to compete at COMBO BREAKER, making it the year’s largest TEKKEN World Tour event to date. The field includes nearly all of the top players in the United States, as well as stars from Korea, Japan, and Europe. All told, nine of the top 12 players on the Tour leaderboard - including all of the top seven - will be in action in St. Charles.
Here are just a few of the stories to follow at COMBO BREAKER:
Will Korea have another big weekend?
We have seen far more players travel internationally to compete in TEKKEN World Tour events this year compared to last year. Last weekend’s Battle Arena Melbourne was a perfect example of this, as seven of the top eight finishers at the Australian event hail from Korea. Many of those top finishers will be in St. Charles hoping for another big weekend.
The Korean contingent will be led by Knee, who won the Battle Arena Melbourne title on Sunday. He was won both of the Master events he has entered this season and will be looking to make it a perfect three-for-three this weekend. JDCR and Saint, who finished first and second at Combo Breaker 2017 respectively, will also be in the field. They will be joined by Kkokkoma, who has placed in the top eight at every Tour event he has entered this year. Those four players make up the top four on the Tour leaderboard, and one of them will end the weekend in the #1 spot.
The Korean depth goes beyond the top four players. Defending TEKKEN World Tour champion Qudans will be in action, as will JeonDDing, GoAttack, and BEast Arena Hong Kong winner LowHigh.
Will one of the Chicago-area heroes rise up?
The Midwest region of the U.S. is full of talented players, but it doesn’t get as much attention as other areas of the country. COMBO BREAKER is the biggest Midwest fighting game event of the year, and it always brings out players from all over the region - especially the Chicagoland area - looking to prove both themselves on the big stage. This year will be no different.
Shadow_20z could be the Midwest name to watch. The Chicago native made a star-making run at the Eleague TEKKEN Team Takedown earlier this year and has only gotten better since then. He won the Chicago Red Bull Conquest qualifier and made an impressive third-place run at Texas Showdown earlier this month.
Fellow Eleague star and Chicago-born player Cuddle Core can also do damage. She finished in the top eight at COMBO BREAKER last year and will be looking for a return trip to the finals.
Who will be able to avoid an early loss?
Players hate to lose at any point in a tournament, but losing early in the bracket can be devastating. The path through a bracket is twice as long on the losers’ side as it is on the winners’ side, so an early loss is difficult to overcome. This is especially true in a tournament as large as COMBO BREAKER, where a loss in pools could mean that a player will have to win as many as 10 sets to advance to Sunday’s finals.
That means that some early-bracket clashes will be critical. Top American players SperoGin and Joey Fury could face off in their first match of the Round of 96, as could Jackie Tran and LowHigh. And the big clashes could start earlier than that, as Speedkicks and Mateo, both of whom competed in the Eleague TEKKEN Team Takedown, are on a collision course to face off in Pool G4.